Exciting new Cheltenham cocktail bar opens for Race Week

With an eclectic menu of cocktails inspired by cultures from all over the world, brand-new bar Rouge is set to open on Cheltenham's Regent Street this March 2023 – just in time for Cheltenham Festival celebrations.

By Andrew Merrell  |  Published
Cheltenham's newest cocktail bar, Rouge on Regent Street, is opening with a drinks menu inspired by global cultures this March 2023.

A new name is joining Cheltenham's enticing bar scene, with Rouge opening its doors to Race Week revellers in March 2023.

With an official launch party planned for family and friends on Saturday 11, the brand-new cocktail bar is open to the public from Sunday 12 March 2023 – all ready for people to celebrate their Cheltenham Festival wins.

Taking over the former Bar Padron site on Regent Street, Rouge serves cocktails inspired by global flavours, with the likes of Asian Pear – a combination of pear vodka, yuzushu, pear nectar, yuzu puree and ginger honey syrup – and Hawaiian hibiscus, which includes sorrel infused rum, peach nectar, hibiscus syrup and lime, on its eclectic menu.

The bar is a labour of love for Cheltenham entrepreneur Tom Noori, who previously ran Door 4 bar in Montpellier and fell in love with cocktails and hospitality while working for Hotel Du Vin in Cheltenham

He's been racing to ready Rouge in time for Cheltenham Festival, with the world-famous jump racing event set to attract thousands of visitors to town from Tuesday 14 to Friday 17 March 2023 (a report by the University of Gloucestershire has estimated the annual event is worth an estimated £274 million to the local economy).

He said: ‘Signage will follow and we have plans to paint the outside too, but that will come later. We have been concentrating on getting ready for the festival and making sure we are prepared.’

Noori, who is a designer for national kitchen brand Wren, is taking time off his day-job to work the busy Race Week, but Rouge will be managed by Taiya Imani Wright.

'Taiya has come down from Birmingham to manage the bar and has designed an incredible menu of cocktails based on the fruits and cultures from around the world,’ said Noori, 32, who added the new business has created between 10 and 12 jobs for Cheltenham Race Week.

‘I think tastes have changed. People may not come out as much now, but when they do they want an experience and they want to try something new.

‘We plan to keep it exciting – introduce new ideas and drinks all the time. We will be inviting local chefs to approach us about pop-up restaurants here too. In the longer term we will look into opening our own kitchen.

‘The whole building will take about 200 people, but we will be using the upstairs – which is a beautiful space – as a private hire space for parties of up to 60 to 80 people.

‘During Race Week we will be opening from about midday and staying open until 3am.’

After Cheltenham Festival, Rouge will initially open on weekends only.

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